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Perseus vs. Theseus
Transcript of Perseus vs. Theseus
Perseus conceived from a beam of light coming through the roof of his mother's home that was sunk underground by her father.
Theseus fathered by both King Aegeus of Athens as well as Poseidon. His mother left her husband to wade across the water to an island and performed some sort of ritual and thus became doubly pregnant. Similarities and Differences Call to Adventure-
Polydectes spun a tale to Perseus about the value and his likeness towards a Gorgon's head, so Perseus set out to bring back Medusa's head as a wedding gift for the ruler of the island and his mother, Danae.
Crete's ruler Minos' son was killed on a quest to defeat the Minotaur. Minos invaded and captured Athens and vowed to destroy it unless 7 maidens and 7 youths were sent every 9 years to be fed to the Minotaur. Theseus decided that he would go as one of the 7 youths and defeat the beast himself. Supernatural Mentor or Helper-
Pallas Athena and Hermes guided Perseus in his adventure to kill Medusa and bring her head back home to Polydectes.
Theseus had no supernatural mentor or helper. Special Weapon-
Hermes gave Perseus a sword while Athena gave him her own shield. At the banquet with the Hyperboreans, Perseus was given winged sandals, a magic wallet that would adjust size according to the object to be placed in it, and an invisibility cap.
Theseus only had the sword that his father King Aegeus had given him upon his ability to roll the stone away from the hollow containing it. Common Archetypes Mother-
Perseus's mother Danae
Theseus's mother Aethra Father Figure-
Perseus's father, Zeus, was not involved in his life. However, Dictys, the fisherman who found Danae and Perseus on the shores of the island took him in and treated him as his own son.
Theseus's mortal father, King Aegeus of Athens, had been around when he showed up in Athens to claim the king as his father. Crossing the Threshold-
When Perseus cut off Medusa's head and brought it back to the island, he took his steps into being a true hero and facing the challenges that accompanied that decision.
Theseus crossed the threshold when he was both on his way to Athens and he had killed all of the bandits on the roads as well as when he killed the Minotaur and returned home to embrace his heroism. Abyss and/or Temptation-
While Perseus never experienced a definitive abyss in his heroic journey, Theseus went through a time when he was stuck in Hades' Underworld with his friend Pirithous. His cousin Hercules eventually saved him from the Chair of Forgetfulness, but Pirithous stayed there forever. Mastery of Two Worlds-
Perseus was able to create a balance between his normal, everyday life and his life as a hero. He settled down with wife Andromeda and they had a son Electryon who was the grandfather of Hercules, cousin of Theseus. Mastery of Two Worlds Continued-
Theseus had a difficult end to his life. His wife Phaedra was madly in love with his son Hippolytus, but both men were unaware of this. Phaedra's nurse went to talk to Hippolytus who didn't see the woman in question and lashed out, driving Phaedra to suicide. She left a note behind for Theseus saying that Hippolytus had "laid a violent hand upon her." Upon reading this, Theseus exiled Hippolytus, who is attacked by a sea serpent along his journey. Artemis then appeared to Theseus and told him of what really occurred, leaving Theseus to wish that he was the one who died instead of his son. Theseus was then killed for no apparent reason while at the court of his friend King Lycomedes. Both Greek heroes are honored in beautiful statues and sculptures.